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Wonderful design....several questions on the project please....

rbcolaNovember 4, 2012
A) We've changed our home design from a 2 story to a 1 story ...putting guest/recreation space in the basement. I would like to consider the stained concrete in the basement......
Does radiant heat and stained concrete work well in lower level living space? Is it more costly - both (stained concrete, radiant heat).
I favored radiant heat but the down side in the "debate" was it's cost in comparision to the alternatives. Your commens please. Thank you!
a room with a view - the family room · More Info
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Bud Dietrich, AIA
Radiant heat in the slab typically costs more to install. It will work wonderfully in a basement situation as the concrete slab will be warm, creating a much more comfortable living environment. Usually, you can keep the room temperature lower in a room heated with radiant heat. So the higher initial cost is offset somewhat by lower utility costs.
    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 7:08AM
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Thank you so much Bud for your rapid reponse!
I've heard this from the material sources.....Question for you: my husband and I are in our 60s-70s.....how long before you get a return on the cost difference. I'm 100% on the side of radiant heating. My husband (who needs it more because we're always struggling with what the thermostat is set at. I like cool....he likes warm. I've shared (multi-thermostats in the home and) radiant heat would be ideal because it comes from the floor up.....which is where we ALL ARE.....not the ceiling where other heat goes for the most part. HELP!
    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 7:15AM
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Bud Dietrich, AIA
The return is based on a number of factors such as utility rates, installation costs, inflation, etc. My sense is that if you base the decision on nothing but dollars and cents, you don't do it. If you base the decision on comfort and quality of life, you do do it.
    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 9:48AM
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I agree with that philosophy. The challenge is you've got 2 people making the decision - because of that I have to decide what I push for. My brother is in construction, small independent contractor. He had installed radiant heat in a renovation project for someone in their bedroom/bathroom area. He's the one that suggested this to me. I researched, met with and put the info in front of my builder and husband. Both leaned toward standard heating and cooling. I'm with you.
Thank you so much. Really appreciate it.
    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 10:08AM
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Bud Dietrich, AIA
FYI - I've assumed we've talked about hot water radiant heat - not electric mats. The electric is very pricey so I only use in small areas like a bathroom.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 10:20AM
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I'm glad you've reminded me!!
You feel comfortable with hot water radiant heat....in a basement floor? I remember although in the distant past - water leakage was a problem for a few folks early on in the introduction of this technology. But, it's been improved and the issues haven't surfaced as much if at all for quite some time is what I'm remembering. Thank you again!
    Bookmark   November 4, 2012 at 11:12AM
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